The Purpose of MLS
- Cooperation between competing offices, brokers, and agents to help market and sell real estate, and to guarantee compensation to the to the listing and selling offices and agents when a transaction closes. A standard listing contract, purchase agreement, seller's property disclosure form, and agency disclosure are key elements to a successful MLS.
- Property valuations can be performed easily by MLS participants using the history of sold properties. It is critical that the MLS Rules require true values to be reported in a timely manner, and that all MLS participants cooperate in good faith to be truthful when entering data into the MLS (i.e. lot size, size of home, sold price, etc.).
- Marketing & promotion of properties listed for sale. The MLS provides syndication to third party websites, integration with IDX websites of MLS participants, and is a powerful tool by itself that can be used to promote all available properties through the MLS participants to anyone working with an MLS participant in a client/agent relationship.
- Provide services to buyers and sellers. An MLS not only brings buyers and sellers together, it helps real estate professionals provide services that merit compensation. The software is full of features and apps including: contact manager, new listing alerts by email, statistics reports, market valuation software, financial calculator, etc. all designed to help brokers and agents save time, look professional, and provide valuable services to buyers and sellers.
- Protect the public. MLS rules require and incentivize MLS participants to be honest, ethical, and fair to all parties. An MLS helps create real estate industry "standards of practice", provides education and training to MLS participants, and helps protect the public by banning individuals who violate the law and/or MLS rules from participating in the MLS.
How It Works
Setting up a new MLS in a country or area that has never used an MLS can seem like a daunting task, but we'll walk you through every step of the process and make it as simple as possible. The first step is to determine the entity that will control the MLS (name, legal structure, liability, etc.). The MLS Entity will then work with us to create MLS bylaws that govern how decisions are made related to services, fees, and membership requirements. We recommend a voting process that gives control of the MLS to the MLS participating brokers (1 vote per broker/office). The MLS rules establish the standards of practice regarding contracts, disclosure, signage, agency, presenting offers, etc. The MLS Entity has complete control over the fields, field multiple choice values, what is required for each property type etc. Once the bylaws, rules, and database setup are in place, we'll have several volunteers (usually an MLS committee of 4-6 brokers) help with testing by entering listings, doing searches, emailing reports, etc. Then when we are confident all of the bugs are worked out, we'll set a GO LIVE date. We suggest a FREE Trial period to get as many MLS participants as possible to see the benefits by using the MLS.
RealtyPro Solutions is the MLS Provider. The MLS Entity is seen as the service provider. We provide the software, host the MLS database on our secure servers, and provide support to the MLS Entity admins and constant upgrades to the software. We work directly with a few designated individuals from the MLS Entity who speak English. The MLS Entity pays us a small monthly fee per user (either monthly, annually, or biannually). The software allows branding to the MLS Entity and will be accessible from the association website.
The software is designed to allow the MLS Entity to easily manage the MLS and to provide support in the primary language. The MLS Entity will be in charge of billing and collecting from MLS participants, paying the MLS provider, adding or removing offices and users to/from the MLS, providing support (by phone or by support ticket), and for reviewing the language translations.
Language Files And Translations
As part of the initial setup, we'll review important settings related to your specific area (i.e. units for measuring land and living area, and standard formatting for things like phone numbers, dates, time, property addresses, currency, etc.). Each MLS will have a "primary language". Field names and multiple choice values for Lookup fields will be in the primary language only. All other navigational text including: menus, page titles, instructions, button names, hints, error messages, etc. will be available in both the primary language and in English. Any user can change the default language by clicking their profile at the top right, then choosing the preferred language.
The MLS has a back-end language file manager app. By default, all text has been translated using google translate to the primary language. A designated person from the MLS Entity (who also speaks English) can review every record of text in the primary language files before we go live. Then, if any user ever notices any text that needs to be reworded, punctuated differently, or modified, users may submit feedback to the language translator. The designated language translator will then submit changes through the back-end file manager or contact the MLS Provider directly by phone so that the changes can be made in a simple and timely manner. Requested changes to language file records should NEVER change the original intent or meaning of the text. Each language file record is simply an interpretation of the existing English value. You should never put names, phone numbers, or personalized info. in the translations. We have settings for that type of information where needed.
User Permissions And Data Controls
Permissions determine what each "User" can view, access, and do in the MLS. Every module, page, and even specific functions can be tied to a permission. The MLS Entity can have as many permissions as needed. As part of the setup, the MLS will determine the "default permissions" for each user type. For example, only MLS admins can add or remove offices or agents, only the MLS support person can view and answer support tickets, brokers can edit all listings in their office, and agents can only edit their own listings, etc. The MLS Entity administrator has the ability to grant or remove permissions for any user (or in other words, over-ride the default permissions) as needed.
The MLS Entity can customize the new listing forms, search forms, and data structure as needed. You decide which fields are required for each property type, and set other custom validation. We'll work closely with your MLS Entity and/or MLS committee to add or change fields, and to customize settings and data as needed.
Every country and area are different when it comes to real estate laws, practices, and industry standards. Our liability and responsibility is limited to maintaining and operating the software and service. It is the responsibility of the MLS Entity to make sure MLS participants are properly licensed, registered, educated, and perform services to the public subject to all local and country laws and municipality or government requirements. Because we are not familiar with the laws of other countries outside the united states, the MLS Entity must show that it is a legal entity, and that it accepts the liability and responsibility for providing this service to it's MLS participants. Your right to use our software is subject to you accepting our "Terms of Service." The MLS Entity also has the ability to make each MLS participant accept their "Terms of Service" in the primary language the first time each user logs in to the MLS.